Pat Conroy passes away at the age of 70

VIDEO: Remembering Pat Conroy
Published: Mar. 5, 2016 at 3:30 AM EST|Updated: Mar. 5, 2016 at 2:20 PM EST
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Pat Conroy. (Source: Debi Chard)
Pat Conroy. (Source: Debi Chard)
Pat Conroy talking with Debi Chard (Source: Debi Chard)
Pat Conroy talking with Debi Chard (Source: Debi Chard)

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Best-selling and beloved author Pat Conroy passed away at the age of 70 Friday night.

Conroy had announced through Facebook in February that he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

The Citadel grad and Beaufort resident announced his diagnosis with the following message:

I have recently been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. With the help of the wonderful people at M.D. Anderson I intend to fight it hard. I am grateful to all my beloved readers, my friends and my family for their prayers. I owe you a novel and I intend to deliver it.
Much love, Pat Conroy

Gov. Nikki Haley tweeted the following statement on Conroy's death:

South Carolina lost a beloved son tonight. Pat Conroy will be missed. We can find comfort knowing his words and love for SC will live on.

Conroy may be best known for writing The Prince of Tides, which was adapted into an Oscar nominated film.

Charleston had an extraordinary impact on Conroy as a young man.

Conroy's years at The Citadel influenced his earlier works, including The Lords of Discipline, which was also adapted to film.

"I think the truth is everybody I write about is part of me," Conroy said during an interview with Live 5 News in 2009.

Conroy pulled from his life experiences, and often his subject matter was controversial.

When Lt. Col. "Bull" Meecham blasted his way onto the pages of The Great Santini, Conroy's family exploded.

It was no secret the marine fighter pilot and father of seven, was based on Conroy's father.

"His family, my mother's family, him, my mother, everybody went crazy and the only thing that rescued me was a terrific movie," Conroy said.

Conroy was born in Atlanta in 1945, the first of seven children.

Conroy's family moved frequently to military bases throughout the South, and Conroy would eventually attend The Citadel.

He published his first book,"The Boo," during his time as a student at the military college.

Conroy had been living in Beaufort with his wife novelist Cassandra King.

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